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Old 03-08-2015, 12:15 PM   #1
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Fish dilemma - how not to waste it

Good afternoon. Without thinking too much, I bought this long frozen Alaskan salmon. It's a little over 2lbs. It's frozen as frozen can be. Came home from the grocery and put it in the freezer. I thought to myself, that don't make sense. I can't cook that all at once. The kids don't like it and only my husband and I do and well we can only eat so much of it. Any ideas? I don't think I want to attempt cutting it frozen. I briefly read online that it can be difficult and I'm not going out and spending money on any special cutting tools. What choice do I have? I suppose I can just give some to someone after I cook the whole thing. I'm guessing just like everything else cooked fish lasts about a week. My husband is super picky and isn't a big fan of fish daily, so he will have one serving and that's it. I wish there was a way to cut it into portions and freeze accordingly.

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Old 03-08-2015, 12:24 PM   #2
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I wish there was a way to cut it into portions and freeze accordingly.
There is. Thaw the fish to the point where you can cut it, divide it into the desired portions and refreeze it. There's no problem in doing that.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:28 PM   #3
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Do you have any power tools, like a scroll saw, band saw or miter saw? DH once brought home a big salmon from a fishing trip, and despite me telling him not to freeze it and that I would cut and package it the next day, he put it in the freezer anyway. We were able to cut it up with the miter saw.

Another thought would be a sharp manual saw.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:29 PM   #4
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Just cut it into chunks with a saw. I use to buy the big 10lb tubes of hamburger. Frozen. Cut it up with a saw. Any saw. Just wash it good first.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:45 PM   #5
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Even a fine toothed hand saw would work.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:49 PM   #6
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If it's a long filet, you could probably break it in half over your knee or the edge of a counter.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:55 PM   #7
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Or cook the whole thing and portion afterwards, freezing the extra for a future meal. Love salmon crumbled over a salad.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:59 PM   #8
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Thanks! I didn't know I could refreeze it, but I guess that makes sense since sometimes people freeze things after cooking them such as Lasagna for example. My husband said he might have a new blade for a saw he has and could probably cut it. Even the idea of slightly defrosting it enough to cut it into portions is a great one. I guess I was feeling insecure with what the best options were for this situation.
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Old 03-08-2015, 01:00 PM   #9
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I usually cook the whole thing too and save some for later. Less hassle.
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Old 03-08-2015, 04:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by legend_018 View Post
Without thinking too much, I bought this long frozen Alaskan salmon. It's a little over 2lbs. It's frozen as frozen can be. Came home from the grocery and put it in the freezer. I thought to myself, that don't make sense. I can't cook that all at once.
If I only had a dollar for every moment like that I've had after coming home from the grocery store!
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Old 03-08-2015, 07:44 PM   #11
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Unlike meat it is not a problem to refreeze it. But defrost in the fridge and only to the point where it can be cut. Unless you husband is going to do it with the saw. Also you did not mention if it was a whole fish or just a side?
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Old 03-09-2015, 05:34 PM   #12
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It's not a whole fish. Thanks
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:18 AM   #13
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I buy those long frozen filets and ask butcher to saw it into pieces. He cuts through it, heavy plastic and all, and puts the pieces onto one of those styro trays and wraps the whole kaboodle in plastic, leaving the original label with price and weight visible for the cashier to scan. I never buy their thawed fish anymore because I know it isn't really fresh. The store just thaws and repackages those same filets.

If you're a regular at your preferred grocery they probably would saw up the one in your freezer. I'd ask them first, before bringing your earlier purchase back to the store.

I've read sciencey explanations about the cellular effect of refreezing fish and it won't kill you but it doesn't improve the fish flesh any. In this neck of the woods buying flash frozen on the boat is the best I can do.
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Old 03-10-2015, 09:39 AM   #14
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I'm not a fan of 'refreezing' anything. Especially fish. Anyway.
I'd thaw the fish out in salted cold water. VERY slow poach it. You do not want the protein strands to turn into rubber bands by overheating them.
Eat what you want and make a gift of the remainder to someone you know who will enjoy the fish.
The fish isn't wasted. It's not frozen twice. Someone you care about gets a treat.
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Old 03-10-2015, 06:35 PM   #15
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Thanks! I didn't know I could refreeze it, but I guess that makes sense since sometimes people freeze things after cooking them such as Lasagna for example. My husband said he might have a new blade for a saw he has and could probably cut it. Even the idea of slightly defrosting it enough to cut it into portions is a great one. I guess I was feeling insecure with what the best options were for this situation.
Actually, partially defrosting until it's soft enough to cut up and then re-freezing without thoroughly cooking it is NOT a good idea. That way goes a very unpleasant and long lasting acquaintance with the bathroom , or worse - the ER.
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Old 03-10-2015, 06:57 PM   #16
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My own fishmonger (40 years experience) says it's perfectly fine and I'll take his word over yours, thank you. As long as you keep it refrigerated, there is no problem doing this.

In fact, this is done all the time. Fish shops will often get in frozen fish, and thaw it to put in their display case (on ice, of course). If it's not sold within a given period of time, it's hard frozen and sold from the freezer case.

And then there's this from FoodSafety.gov

Quote:
Thawed or partially thawed food in the freezer may be safely refrozen if it still contains ice crystals or is at 40 įF or below. Partial thawing and refreezing may affect the quality of some food, but the food will be safe to eat.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:09 PM   #17
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Unlike meat it is not a problem to refreeze it. But defrost in the fridge and only to the point where it can be cut. Unless you husband is going to do it with the saw. Also you did not mention if it was a whole fish or just a side?
Sorry, Charlie, it is certainly NOT safe to defrost and re-freeze anything without cooking it.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:15 PM   #18
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Sorry, Charlie, it is certainly NOT safe to defrost and re-freeze anything without cooking it.
Incorrect.

And this, from the USDA:

Quote:
After thawing in the refrigerator, items such as ground meat, stew meat, poultry, seafood, should remain safe and good quality for an additional day or two before cooking; red meat cuts (such as beef, pork or lamb roasts, chops and steaks) 3 to 5 days. Food thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking, although there may be some loss of quality.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:42 PM   #19
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Yeah, It's not a safety issue. It's just how can you get the best quality without paying an exorbitant price for it. If you live a thousand miles from a fishing wharf, the unfrozen fish in your grocery store has been thawed and repackaged. Doesn't mean its toxic. But why not get the freshest you can? The lady who started this thread seemed to know this and was looking for way to not waste the fish by not refreezing it. Folks in the grocery store buy the price reduced fish, in fact they even seek it out, that is approaching its expiration date. The typical advice from the grocer and sometimes printed on the reduced price label, is use or freeze right away. Well I've done it and it isn't terrible. But it isn't as good as it could be either.
I still maintain that if you you didn't catch it, and maybe even if you did, the freshest fish you can get is (still!) flash frozen on the boat.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:43 PM   #20
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The UK government's Food Standards Agency states quite categorically that NO food which has been de-frosted should be re-frozen unless it has been cooked in the meantime. Any restaurant caught doing so would be prosecuted. The law requires that all commercially pre-packed food is labelled accordingly and the customer must be made aware if the product s/he is buying "loose" (ie weighed and wrapped at the point of sale) has been previously frozen.
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